Hues of Fire and Earth: David Schneider and Vusi Ndlovu collaborate


Across South Africa, fire plays an important part in cooking. It infuses every dish with unique flavours, textures and aromas. But beyond its practical role, it invokes a sense of connection to the land and its people, and symbolises community, gathering, and celebration – bringing people together around the hearth to share stories, laughter, and most importantly, food. Meet two chefs who embody this fiery spirit and craft magic with the flame.


David Schneider, executive chef and co-owner of Chefs Warehouse at Maison Franschhoek and The Red Room at Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel, brings a wealth of experience and passion to the table. His culinary journey spans roles from chef to butcher to restaurateur, with notable stints at iconic establishments like DW Eleven-13 and The Pot Luck Club. David’s approach to cooking is defined by authenticity, heartfelt connection, and a dedication to his craft.

Vusi Ndlovu, executive chef and creative director of African Culinary Library, EDGE Restaurant, and MLILO Restaurant at the Time Out Market Cape Town, celebrates the richness and diversity of African heritage through his bold and innovative cuisine. He pushes the boundaries of South African food with creative interpretations and flavour experimentation, offering a fresh perspective on traditional dishes.

The collaboration will see Vusi and David cooking together at Eat Out The Art of Food in Gauteng. They were careful not to simply replicate their respective restaurant dishes, avoiding any sense of ownership over specific creations. Instead, they approached the use of fire holistically, aiming to impart every aspect of their menu with its essence. Most importantly, they sought to approach the collaboration with a spirit of enjoyment and experimentation.

“Once we figured out a direction for the menu, ideas were plenty,” says Vusi. “We also had the mutual goal of embracing Joburg. Fire is the key behind all of this. Guests can expect a lot of interaction and a few ‘ah-ha’ moments. It’ll be a show, that’s for sure. In terms of the menu, some highlights would include ancient grains, items cooked in banana leaves, lots of grilled and charred ingredients, beautiful fire-cooked breads, dressings, and a few other surprises,” he adds.

Lexus, Eat Out’s headline sponsor for this boutique event series, states: “Creating food and elevating it into culinary art is fundamentally human, and in its detailed execution, comprises an evolved level of craft. The thoughtful detail and craftsmanship are basic cultural pillars supporting the Lexus brand. The Eat Out partnership, for Lexus, redefines modern luxury and lifestyle experiences.”

The Art of Food experience is elevated by a carefully curated selection of premium beverages, including Devil’s Peak beer, Malachite Fynbos Gin, and DGB wines. Each sip is savoured from Riedel glassware, known for its elegant design and craftsmanship. And as a delightful memento, guests will receive a take-home goodie bag filled with exciting items and a sought-after accessory from Steyn City, ensuring memories of the day linger long past the last mouthful and sip.

The Art of Food: Hues of Fire and Earth will take place on 18 February 2024 at Ground, The Venue in Muldersdrift.

Please note: Due to the nature and style of this The Art of Food event, attendance is by invitation.

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